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What should we do if a 'planet-killer'
asteroid takes aim at Earth?

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Posted By: Pluperfect, 2/22/2020 1:41:03 PM

If a giant object looks like it's going to slam into Earth, humanity has a few options: Hammer it with a spacecraft hard enough to knock it off course, blast it with nuclear weapons, tug on it with a gravity tractor, or even slow it down using concentrated sunlight. We'll have to decide whether to visit it with a scout mission first, or launch a full-scale attack immediately. Those are a lot of decisions to make under existential duress, which is why a team of MIT researchers have come up with a guide, published February in the journal Acta Astronautica, to help future asteroid deflectors.

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Reply 1 - Posted by: sanspeur 2/22/2020 1:43:04 PM (No. 326534)
what we used to say when all the school ducked under their desks for an air raid , bend over & kiss yer arse gd’bye “
12 people like this.

Reply 2 - Posted by: earlybird 2/22/2020 1:47:22 PM (No. 326539)
A “Planet Killer”? Is this what those dopey science writers sit around, thinking up, so they’ll have something to write about? I would try to aim it toward Adam Schiff. Or Chuckie and Nancy. Or Blumenthal. Or….
8 people like this.

Reply 3 - Posted by: Vesicant 2/22/2020 1:47:35 PM (No. 326541)
If an asteroid "takes aim" at Earth, there won't be much we can do about it, because that will be one smart asteroid.
14 people like this.

Reply 4 - Posted by: bamapreacher 2/22/2020 1:51:04 PM (No. 326548)
Just pray that it brings intelligent life with it 'cause there's bugger all down here on earth.
5 people like this.

Reply 5 - Posted by: marbles 2/22/2020 1:51:43 PM (No. 326550)
An asteroid cannot " take aim" at planet earth. I do believe that it could be blow up before is was get here.
6 people like this.

Reply 6 - Posted by: GO3 2/22/2020 1:56:19 PM (No. 326558)
Call Harry Stamper.
6 people like this.

Reply 7 - Posted by: kono 2/22/2020 2:04:28 PM (No. 326571)
Taking anti-asteroid supplements as instructed every day may reduce your chances of being clobbered by an earth-killing asteroid. May cause cancer in some people. Women and minorities hardest hit. Do not take if you are pregnant and know a lawyer.
13 people like this.

Reply 8 - Posted by: Chuzzles 2/22/2020 2:07:50 PM (No. 326579)
Not gonna hit the earth. Hubby's been tracking this via the NASA website for over a year or so now. But what it will do is pass close enough to the earth so that not only will we see it, but if it has enough magnetic pull, it could cause the equivalent of EMP bursts and major Sun spot activity. Quakes could be coming, and that would be more of a problem for the residents of this Planet IMO.
4 people like this.

Reply 9 - Posted by: Videodrone 2/22/2020 2:19:41 PM (No. 326593)
Been tracked for some time - as noted not going to hit us (this time) in response to what can we do? Not much
2 people like this.

Reply 10 - Posted by: Catherine 2/22/2020 2:23:05 PM (No. 326596)
I'd buy all the chocolate I could find and dig in!!
8 people like this.

Reply 11 - Posted by: Ebuilder 2/22/2020 2:25:15 PM (No. 326597)
No mention here of Dr. Thomas Horn's book on this, "The Wormwood Prophecies." The Bible call this star ["aster" - asteroid] "Wormwood" and describes it "like a mountain on fire fell into the sea" from Revelation. NASA calls this asteroid "Apophis" - which is the Egyptian god of chaos. It is calculated to hit around 2029. Christians should be out of here.
3 people like this.

Reply 12 - Posted by: Philipsonh 2/22/2020 2:27:06 PM (No. 326601)
I have a small thought the meteor's size might influence what occurs, since I lived in the era of dinosaurs and am sending this comment from far, far away.
1 person likes this.

Reply 13 - Posted by: Toby Ten Bears 2/22/2020 2:37:12 PM (No. 326611)
IMPEACH!!!!!
11 people like this.

Reply 14 - Posted by: Urgent Fury 2/22/2020 2:38:05 PM (No. 326613)
You send Robert Duvall or Bruce Willis up to it, duh. I'm perplexed NASA doesn't know this.
10 people like this.

Reply 15 - Posted by: StrikingViking 2/22/2020 2:58:51 PM (No. 326633)
I don't know what Earth's nations will attempt but I do know which of those nation's will foot the bills.
5 people like this.

Reply 16 - Posted by: bad-hair 2/22/2020 3:13:01 PM (No. 326647)
What I do every day. Pray.
6 people like this.

Reply 17 - Posted by: Troutgreen 2/22/2020 3:15:28 PM (No. 326649)
Biden would bust it to pieces with a chain. Or he'd forget where he left his pants. Bernie would tax it. Elizabeth would lie and say she has a plan for that. Amy would eat it with her comb. Pete would kiss it. Bloomberg would pay it to go way after signing an NDA
13 people like this.

Reply 18 - Posted by: hershey 2/22/2020 3:46:16 PM (No. 326668)
Ummm, get those miners suited up and launched??? Oh, no, be like in the 60's for nuclear attack...get under your desk and protect your head??? Er, no, how about just bending over and kissing your you know what goodbye????
1 person likes this.

Reply 19 - Posted by: DVC 2/22/2020 4:03:20 PM (No. 326674)
Interesting that no option with a lander and a extended period thruster was considered. Seems like the "area under the curve" from an engineering standpoint could be far higher, basically a moderate impulse (thrust) for a longer time, could modify the orbit. Also, this wouldn't break apart a loosely agglomerated asteroid/comet the way an impact would likely do. One key item to keep in mind for this stuff is how really ROUGH these calculations of impact actually are. The mathematics are very precise, but the INPUT DATA are not known well enough, and there are many simplying assumptions which affect the outcome. From a NASA site on the asteroid Apophis: "It was found that small uncertainties in the masses and positions of the planets and Sun can cause up to 23 Earth radii of prediction error for Apophis by 2036. The standard model of the Earth as a point mass can introduce up to 2.9 Earth radii of prediction error by 2036; at least the Earth’s oblateness must be considered to predict an impact. The gravity of other asteroids can cause up to 2.3 Earth radii of [additional] prediction uncertainty for Apophis." So, their best calculations have very large inherent, irreducible errors, because we don't actually know the mass of the Sun and the planets to 10 or 20 significant digits or precisely where they actually are (and will likely NEVER know them this precisely), have a built in error of 23 times the radius of the earth. Huge errors in the calcs due to things like assuming that a planet is a point mass, when it is not. Not good. An old physicist joke, about calculating something concerning a cow, "First, assume a spherical cow." Engineers like to tell this joke, since it shows how physicists are always dramatically simplifying problems for their theoretical "solutions", where us engineers have to actually solve the ACTUAL problem, in the real world, and work with all those non-spherical cows which we run across.
6 people like this.

Reply 20 - Posted by: Lawsy0 2/22/2020 4:11:50 PM (No. 326681)
Grown-ups do not play What If? They make plans, find alternatives, work on contingencies., you know. Grown up stuff.
1 person likes this.

Reply 21 - Posted by: columba 2/22/2020 4:14:53 PM (No. 326686)
Say this: "Our Father....."
6 people like this.

Reply 22 - Posted by: Videodrone 2/22/2020 4:22:52 PM (No. 326692)
Apologizes for the 2nd hit - #19 had a much more nuanced answer and in reality there are a few ideas that could help (ion thrusters, "rock thowers" and the like) however all have a very large "indeterminate" effect that needs to be measured and corrected for in real time - aside from the wee problem that currently we have no way of getting any significant payload even to NEO let alone Lunar or planetary distances.
2 people like this.

Reply 23 - Posted by: DVC 2/22/2020 4:40:27 PM (No. 326707)
If anyone is actually interested in this topic, NASA has a great site on Apophis. https://cneos.jpl.nasa.gov/doc/apophis/ One more amazing concept: "Changing the amount of energy Apophis absorbs by half a percent as late as 2018 - for example by covering a 40 x 40 meter (130 x 130 foot) patch with lightweight reflective materials (an 8 kg payload) - can change its position in 2036 by a minimum of one Earth radius." This would change the force the sunlight is applying to the asteroid....normally considered "negligible" in most situations, but definitely non-zero. This fits with my concept of landing a small, nuclear powered thruster and pushing on an asteroid for say, a couple of months or years, with a very modest thrust, maybe 100 lbs or so. You can bet that the solar force on a 40 sq meter area is way, way less than 100 lbs. Of course one issue it "changing the orbit by minimum one Earth orbit" with a large error in the calculation.....might ensure a miss becomes a hit. Hippocratic Oath applies in spades here.
4 people like this.

Reply 24 - Posted by: Jennie C. 2/22/2020 5:58:05 PM (No. 326771)
Duck!!! Seriously, that's not God's plan, so don't worry about it.
2 people like this.

Reply 25 - Posted by: RuckusTom 2/22/2020 7:44:35 PM (No. 326849)
Pull up a lawn chair and a case of beer and enjoy the show.
3 people like this.

Reply 26 - Posted by: red1066 2/22/2020 8:12:13 PM (No. 326877)
China or Russia will have to do something to stop it, because Obozo killed any progress directed at building any rocket large enough to do anything from the U.S. So sending Bruce Willis and his mining crew up in an American vehicle is out of the question.
1 person likes this.

Reply 27 - Posted by: padiva 2/22/2020 9:44:55 PM (No. 326939)
Will this happen before or after the rapture?
1 person likes this.

Reply 28 - Posted by: ColonialAmerican1623 2/23/2020 1:44:58 AM (No. 327029)
I am more concerned about the killer virus we are dealing with now.
2 people like this.

Reply 29 - Posted by: anotherctyankee 2/24/2020 7:45:31 AM (No. 328022)
Fall on your knees and pray to God.
1 person likes this.

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